Sometimes finding a mobile that offers certain guarantees with a reduced budget is complicated . There are many existing models and it is very easy to get lost among them. Today we want to talk to you about the Alcatel A3, a terminal that offers some very interesting features. For about 150 euros we will get a terminal with a 5-inch screen, a 13-megapixel camera and a fingerprint reader.
A lightweight terminal, with a nice design, a compact size and modest technical characteristics. We already had the opportunity to see the Alcatel A3 at MWC past, but now we have had the opportunity to test the terminal for a few days . We tell you what we think.
Alcatel A3 datasheet
|screen||5-inch IPS with HD resolution of 1,280 x 720 pixels|
|Main chamber||13 MP, autofocus system, LED flash|
|Camera for selfies||5 MP, fixed focus, front flash|
|Internal memory||16 GB|
|Extension||microSD up to 32GB|
|Processor and RAM||MT6737 Quad Core 1.25 GHz processor, 1.5 GB RAM|
|Operating system||Android 6.0 Marshmallow|
|Connections||4G LTE cat.4, WiFi 802.11b / g / n, Bluetooth 4.2, GPS with A-GPS, Micro USB 2.0, NFC|
|Design||Plastic, colors: black and white|
|Dimensions||142 x 70.5 x 8.6 mm|
|Featured Features||Fingerprint reader|
Simple but attractive design
Despite its low price, the Alcatel A3 has an attractive design . It is not a design that will surprise us right out of the box, but it is effective.
At the front we only have the screen. The top and bottom edges are sizable and honestly unhelpful. The top has the speaker and front camera. And at the bottom we have a speaker that does not have too much power. The buttons will be on the screen, which we did not like too much. The reason is that they cut the size of the screen a bit, which is quite a fair size .
The back cover is made of plastic, but it has a glossy finish with a very interesting 3D effect . In it we can see some small gray diamonds that give it a nice finish. The cover must be removed to insert the SIM card and memory card. Of course, after the 15-day test we have noticed certain marks on the case, which makes us think that it is not too resistant.
In the central area of the rear we have the camera lens, which is practically flush with the housing. Just below the camera is the fingerprint reader , in a gray color that stands out against the black. The edges of the back case are slightly curved for easy grip.
Alcatel has decided to use a metal frame to achieve a more robust design . On the left side (looking at the mobile from the front) we will not have any buttons. On the other side, we will have the volume buttons and the power button, which is textured to facilitate its location.
Alcatel A3 has a thickness of 8.6 mm . It is not the thinnest mobile on the market, but it is close to other more expensive terminals such as the LG Q6.
For the rest, at the bottom we have the charging connector and at the top the headphone jack.
Modest technical set
Once again, we must bear in mind that we are facing a terminal of 150 euros, so we will not have a very powerful technical team . That is why we have focused on the daily use of the device.
But before commenting on it, let's review the features of the Alcatel A3. The first thing you'll see will be your screen, IPS panel 5 inch HD resolution of 1,280 x 720 pixels . A panel without surprises, which has not given us any display problems.
Inside the terminal we have an MT6737 processor with four 1.25 GHz cores .
Accompanying this chip we have 1.5 GB of RAM and 16 GB of internal storage . This capacity can be expanded using a MicroSD card of up to 32 GB capacity.
And now that we know what we have under the hood, we move on to comment on our usage impressions. The Alcatel A3 works well, with some limitations . In the menu and general applications, such as Twitter, Facebook or WhatsApp, the operation is correct.
However, in other more demanding apps, such as Google Maps or some games, the mobile suffers . We have also noticed it if we try, for example, to run one application at the same time as we install another.
And for data lovers, here are the results of the AnTuTu and Geekbench tests . In Geekbench it scores a discreet 547 points with a core and 1,517 points in Multi-Core. In the AnTuTu test she gets a score of 29,318 points. This places it above terminals such as the ZTE Blade V7 Lite, which is priced very similar to the Alcatel A3.
The main chamber of the Alcatel A3 has a sensor 13 megapixel . This is accompanied by an autofocus system and an LED flash. The mobile allows this resolution to be interpolated up to 16 megapixels.
Photo results are acceptable when shooting in bright light . However, in low light conditions we will have serious problems. Noise will make an appearance as soon as the scene is slightly dark.
Gallery photos made with Alcatel A3
On the front we have a 5 megapixel sensor with fixed focus. It is a very simple camera but it has a surprise. And is that Alcatel has included a small LED flash so that we can take selfies in low light conditions. Like the main camera, this one can be interpolated to reach 8 megapixels.
Even more interesting are the software-level options provided by the Camera app. On the one hand we can use the dynamic filters of Face Mask . These will allow us to add different and fun masks to the selfies that we have taken.
We can also make our selfies come to life with Face Show . This allows you to create animations with photos. And we can even use the Instant Collage function that we already knew when we analyzed the Alcatel A5 LED. This will allow us to generate a collage very easily and quickly.
Operating system and software
Alcatel has chosen to use Android 6.0 Marshmallow on the A3. We would have preferred that the terminal arrived with Android 7.0 Nougat as standard, but in return we have a fairly 'clean' system .
We do have the usual customization layer of the company, but the changes it makes are more on an aesthetic level . That is, we have custom themes and icons, but nothing that penalizes the user experience.
Among the applications that are installed as standard, we find many that most of us would install equally, like all those from Google, Facebook or Instagram. It also includes an application to create an access point, the SwiftKey keyboard and an app for mobile protection . We won't find anything else.
In addition to these apps, the use that has been given to the fingerprint sensor has caught our attention. Yes, it serves to unlock the mobile, but also for much more. For example, we can configure the unlocking of the terminal in private mode , thus protecting certain apps and photos from prying eyes.
We can also use the fingerprint sensor to access our favorite applications with a single touch . We can configure up to 5 fingerprints to open five different applications directly from the lock screen. It's even possible to set a fingerprint to take a selfie instantly with the touch of a finger.
Autonomy and connectivity
During the days that we have tested the mobile, the Alcatel A3 has shown two things. The first thing that if we 'give it a shot' the battery diminishes rapidly . The days that we have needed intensive use (adding music and videos to the normal use of social networks, mail and the Internet) we have reached the night with a battery below 15%.
The second is that in normal working days, in which we have limited ourselves to checking mail, social networks, web pages and some sporadic video, the Alcatel A3 has arrived at night with a battery of 35-40% without problems .
However, to have more reliable data we have subjected the terminal to the AnTuTu test . This is your result:
The result of the battery test is in the average of low cost terminals . For example, the Alcatel A3's score is slightly lower than the ZTE Blade V8 Lite, which has a 2,500 mAh battery.
In other words, if we usually make very intensive use of the mobile throughout the day, it may not be the best option. In addition, the Alcatel A3 does not have any fast charging system . We have even noticed that the mobile takes too long to perform a full charge.AnTuTu Alcatel A3 Battery Test
When it comes to connectivity, we have no surprise. The Alcatel A3 is compatible with 4G networks, has 802.11n WiFi, Bluetooth 4.2 and a MicroUSB connector. Yes we have been surprised by the incorporation of an NFC chip in a terminal of this price.
The Alcatel A3 is a simple mobile, aimed at users looking for their first experience with a smartphone or who are not going to make intensive use .
As usual, Alcatel has decided to use plastic for the back cover . It is logical in a terminal that does not exceed 150 euros. However, it is a quality plastic with a very successful exterior design. In addition, the frames are metal, which allows a more compact set.
The incorporation of the fingerprint reader is appreciated . If you have never used it, you may not miss it too much, but if you have ever tried it, it has surely become essential for you.
Its low price has saved the company on the technical package, and it shows. The terminal works fine if we don't ask much of it, but it gets stuck on more complex tasks . We have noticed a certain slowdown in games, more demanding apps or when we had many applications open.
On the other hand, the tactile response is not as good as it should . Perhaps in normal use it is not too pronounced, but in games like Super Mario Run a more agile response is required. Again, if the use that we are going to give it is 'normal', we will not have problems.
And we end up talking about the price. The Alcatel A3 is available in our country with a price of around 150 euros . Taking this into account, we could say that the problems mentioned are practically excused.